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Democrats Slam Giannott on Personal Finances

Giannott says tough economy presented challenges for his family, but all debt has since been repaid.

Suffolk Democrats unveiled a new website Tuesday accusing Republican county legislature candidate John Giannott of shirking a $22,000 loan and failing to pay business and sales taxes.

Giannott is challenging Democrat for an open seat in the 7th Legislative District, which includes Patchogue, Medford, Holtsville and Blue Point. 

"John Giannott was sued and ran from the taxman. Now he wants YOU to trust him with YOUR money," the top of the website reads. 

The site charges Giannott with attempting to avoid a process server in 2009 after a civil judgment was filed against him by Teachers Credit Union for an unpaid loan of nearly $22,000. It also lists several outstanding tax liens against Carla Marla's Ice Cream, a Giannott-owned Bellport business. 

In a conference call with reporters Tuesday morning, Suffolk County Democratic Committee Chairman Rich Schaffer said it was fair game to go after Giannott on his personal finances, which Schaffer called a "symbol of irresponsibility."

"We want the voters of that district to know just how he's handled his personal finances and ask the question of whether or not they can trust him to handle the county's budget or their own tax dollars...," Schaffer said of Giannott. 

Giannott, reached via email Tuesday, said the website was a low blow and he charged Calarco with resorting "to dirty politics to try to distract voters from the problems he's helped to create."

Calarco, of Patchogue, is currently the chief of staff for Legis. Jack Eddington, who is for re-election in the 7th District. 

As to the substance on the website, Giannott said the "difficult economy" presented many challenges for him and his wife, Jenni. Giannott opened Bellport restaurant Porters on the lane in 2008 just as the financial sector was about to crater. 

"As a result, we fell behind on a few bills," Giannott said. "My wife and I worked around the clock, sometimes twenty hours per day, to get the restaurant off the ground. In time, the restaurant became a success and any debt we owed has been paid in full, for several years now."

Through the Looking Glass October 11, 2011 at 11:41 PM
A Brookhaven based Republican involved in a questionable financial maneuver. Hmm. That's unusual~
Maxwell Smart October 12, 2011 at 11:08 AM
There are no clean republicans in Crookhaven town.
PatchogueLifetime October 12, 2011 at 11:35 AM
I was wondering when the Dems were going to pull the "Not Giannott" out of the pun bag!
jane October 12, 2011 at 11:53 AM
who better to understand what is going on then someone who has felt the pressure of falling behind? I would rather a real man represent then someone who has never had to walk the walk! But typical politics say bad and negitive statements about someone! I am sure everyone has had something they are not proud of. Maybe that keeps the good people from running for office. Glad to know that the pure and perfect people can still throw stones!
John DeMarle October 12, 2011 at 01:03 PM
Our community neds more individuals like John Giannott who will risk their own money to start a business and offer employment opportunities. It's not surprizing that he suffered financial challenges which took a while to resolve. Does Mr. Colarco have any accomplishments of his own to talk abou,t rather than his pathetic attrempt to dishonor Mr. Giannott? It seems not.
Judy Pepenella October 12, 2011 at 06:50 PM
All small businesses are having a rough time. Many, if not all, owners are NOT taking paychecks to make sure their suppliers AND employees are taken care of. Any profit that comes out normally goes back into the business...then and ONLY then, do they get paid. As a resident and voter Patchogue, I applaud John Giannott for standing up to represent the people. We need a person who is a businessman - someone who has created jobs, maintained a payroll and balanced a budget - to represent us in office. Mr. Calarco...what accomplishments can you stand behind, besides the coat tails and many photo shoots with Jack Eddington? I welcome your answer to this question. Both the Suffolk and New York State Democratic Parties are AGAIN proving to all voters how clueless they are to the REAL issues that are affecting constituents in our State.
Ben Vitale October 13, 2011 at 12:48 AM
Quoting Mr. John Giannott; "In time, the restaurant became a success and any debt we owed has been paid in full, for several years now." Why was this article written; this is ancient history? So! Rich Schaeffer said "It was fair game to go after John Giannott!" Fair game implies "stalking and hunting;" is that what the Democratic Committee is about? Do you know of anyone who was not impacted by the economic downturn? Many people that I know lost everything, including their self respect! The author of this article said that "Mr. Giannott with attempting to avoid a process server in 2009;" this statement implies that John Giannott was hiding or running away from the process server. How do you know that he was involved with any of these actions? In the process servers own words; "I was unable to find defendant." Is it possible that Mr. Giannott went to the super market to buy groceries? Quoting the author of this article, "John Giannott was sued and ran from the taxman;" did he leave town? No he did not leave town! So why do you imply "flight from the law," when no such action took place? I will be voting for John Giannott in the next election because he knows how it feels to be devoured by the economy; he also knows how to recover! I am sick and tired of character assassination on the part of both the Democrats and the Republicans! I feel that the general populous feels the same as I do! Report the issues and leave the rest behind! Amen!
gooseman3 October 13, 2011 at 01:00 AM
well said Mr. Vitale! I can respect the fact that Giannott has been knocked down like most of us in this economic environment, dusted himself off, and has persevered.
Erik October 14, 2011 at 06:14 AM
Giannott was a little behind on his bills like most of us these days. The fact that he paid and hasn't resorted to the dirty campaign smearing tactics that Calarco is using says a lot about the integrity of Giannott. Calarco worked under Eddington for years, so let's not elect someone whom is to blame for the debt in the seventh district.
John Bogack October 14, 2011 at 12:29 PM
I am willing to give Mr. Giannott the benefit of the doubt. Apparently he did fall behind on his bills and later was able to dig himself out and pay off his debts. OK. However I will not be voting for him for other reasons. He really does not have the experience for the job that Rob Calarco has. As Legislator Eddington's chief aide for many years Rob has a wealth of experience about local issues that frankly Mr. Giannott does not have. He owns a resturant after all and that has very little to do with the many issues that affect every day people in the election district. Plus from my own experience every time I have asked Rob for help with varioius issues that I have had to deal with he has been responsive and effective and I expect that will continue if he gets elected.
John Bogack October 14, 2011 at 06:43 PM
Hey Eric. What debt are you referring to?
Elizabeth October 24, 2011 at 12:51 AM
Very strange that a person having difficulty with cash flows waves a republican flag. Wasnt it the republicans that stripped away all the regulation from our beloved wall streeters allowing them to behave with not one iota of ethical sense and subsequently tank our economy. Trouble with $$$$ Mr. Giannott? Welcome to the 99%.
gooseman3 October 24, 2011 at 02:28 AM
In an attempt to increase homeownership particularly by minorities and less affluent, the govt put a full out attack on the underwriting standards of the industry since the early 1990's. That's where the problem started Elizabeth.
Christie October 26, 2011 at 02:10 PM
I think that it is sad that Mr. Giannott would think that it is ok to exploit PatMed students for his own political gain. In a local paper dated 10/20 Mr. Giannott wished the students good luck on the homecoming game but on the side of the ad he put “ELECT ME” and that is when it became a campaign ad. Shame on him, the coaches and anyone else involved who would think this was ok. Mr. Giannott has nothing to do with the football team and the cheerleading squad. How do you not know that some or all of those parents are not supporters of Rob Calarco? Were parents informed of these photos? Did Mr. Giannott get approval from school officials to be on school district property and use the school district students in your ad? If there is not a law or at least a policy then here is the perfect example of why there should be one. Sorry Mr. Giannott again you showed selfishness and irresponsibility.
John October 26, 2011 at 02:43 PM
Christie, It is clear to any rational human being reading your posts that you have a progessive elitist agenda and you are not that swift. Do you work for Calarco? Do you know Mr. Giannott, did you know he attended Pat-Med High School. Is it not alright to visit your alma mata on homecoming and pose for a picture? Please stick to your petty photograph observations and leave the politics to the grown-ups.
john giannott October 26, 2011 at 04:00 PM
yes I had permission, and both teams were thrilled to show support!, thanks so so much for your concern!
Judy Pepenella October 27, 2011 at 05:34 AM
Tonight the Medford Civic Association held a candidates debate. It was quite enlightening. The arrogance of Rob Calarco was not pleasing to watch. He dropped all the standard fear tactics-if my opponent is voted in jobs will be lost, times will get harder, bla bla bla. He additionally continued his ‘dog on a bone’ rants about the bad financial mis-management of Giannott vs his having a proven track record. Giannott responded with facts-He is a business man whose business suffered at the hands of the Town & County’s endless red tape & had to shut down his ice cream shop. Then with the proof of the repayment of the loan & payment of taxes in hand, he shut down Calarco’s rant. Funny how facts are so exposing! It is sad that this is how the NYS Democratic Party wants to win races. They are running all campaigns in the same fashion...dirty lies to try to win the seats they feel they deserve to have. I think the general public is way to smart to fall for their childhood antics any longer. John Giannott again proved to all of us what his game plan is, why he is the best person for the position & why his methods-pure business logic-are the only way to resolve the jobs situation in Suffolk County. The time has come to elect people to office that want to REPRESENT ALL of the citizens of their district. It is time to elect honest, hard working business people to office, not politicos who are in office looking for their earned seat or pension. Judy
John Bogack October 27, 2011 at 11:21 AM
Gee, I was at that debate and I thought Rob Calarco did pretty good. It was Mr. Giannott who got egg on his face when he accused Rob of buying a home in Patchogue Village just so he could say he was a home owner and tax payer. And he made that claim after earlier saying that after the election Rob was going back upstate when he knew in fact that Rob had just bought a home right here. What impresses me most about Mr. Giannott is his total absence of any experience whatsoever in support of commununity issues let alone government ones. And touting business experience works unless, as appears to be the facts, that business experience is flawed with failed payments, tax liens and judgements. The it doesn't and then you have a candidate who has in fact nothing to offer the public except the potential for future failed judgements.
Fred Stewart October 27, 2011 at 03:03 PM
I'm with you Lori... even if the information is valid, the way it's being presented is 'Fox news style'... i don't care for it.
gooseman3 October 27, 2011 at 11:37 PM
John what happened to giving Giannott the "benefit of the doubt" as you wrote on 10/14.......i guess not......as for the facts i think it's been clearly stated that he's paid back everything he was behind on, and the reason it happened in the first place was because of the delay from the Board of Health in opening on of his stores......at least he paid back what he owed, which is more than i can say for alot of people.....Experience?? yes maybe Giannott doesn't have political experience but to me that's overrated anyway......he's an intelligent successful businessman and i'm willing to bet he can read the county budget and go thru it and cut all the waste.......maybe your just worried about getting some "no show " jobs from your buddy
John Bogack October 28, 2011 at 12:10 AM
I have no idea what you are talking about. I have a job. I am 64 years old and have been working since I was 21. Yes I did say I was giving Mr. Giannott a pass but a pass is not a pardon and since now I am getting annoyed that pass is cancelled. Mr. Gianott made his business experience his key resume for the job. It's fair to question that because he has made his experience in business front and center as the reason for electing him. His experience and knowledge about anything involving the general business of running a government is however totally absent. That is not the kind of person I want to see in office.
gooseman3 October 28, 2011 at 12:38 AM
Since your "getting annoyed" i will pass on a rebuttal
D.Ockers October 28, 2011 at 02:01 AM
Lets cut to the chase here, explain why all the negative and untrue campaign literature on Calarco's part ? It's not a hard question and it's not complicated, so how about and explanation on why this was his course of action. Hail to The Chief of Stuff, talk about being bogus.................
John Bogack October 28, 2011 at 02:03 PM
An apology is due, mine. I did get annoyed but did not mean for that to stop anyone from commenting. I got annoyed at the inference that my comments were in someway tied to a promise of a job from Rob Calarco. That did rub me the wrong way. My support for Rob Calarco is based on years of contact with him. He has never done me wrong, and always done what he could on the issues that brought me to Leg. Eddington' office. In contrast I do not know much about his opponent and I worry that a person with so little real experience in County government can do a good job as an elected legislator. That is pretty much my core beliefs in this race. If Mr. Giannott did get elected I would wish him the best, offer him my help if he could use it. But I will be voting for his opponent because I would rather stick with a person whom I know has already gotten results when I have needed them. Thank God the election is near and finally the people will be able to speak and settle this question by a vote of the people. We live in a great country where ultimately we can decide our differences in this way.
Elizabeth K October 29, 2011 at 12:20 AM
Looking foward to voting in another election, who will be responsible for removing all the signs posted?
John Bogack October 31, 2011 at 04:36 PM
Sandra, the only grump around that I can see from your comments is you. They certainly don't serve Mr. Giannott well and if you have taken the time to read his posts he has respectively agreed to disagree with me and sometimes he has whooped my ass. But he has never stooped to the insulting language you have used. Today Newsday endorsed Rob Calarco pretty much for the same reasons I am going to vote for him. He knows the job having worked as a chief legislative aide for 6 years. Plus when I have issues that I needed help on he has helped me. I have said this time and time again. There are people who have posted their support for Mr. Giannott because they know him and trust him. I haven't had that experience so my feelings and loyalties are elsewhere. It's really as simple as that.
David Kennedy October 31, 2011 at 05:58 PM
In defense of Mr. Bogack, he is someone who always speaks his mind but always in a very respectful manner...why he is being attacked for stating an opinion is beyond me since I have never seen or heard him personally attack anyone...we should all take a lesson from Mr. Bogack on how to express ourselves without insulting those who disagree. I may not always agree with him, but he commands my attention because he respects everyone who takes interest in what is happening in his community.
john giannott October 31, 2011 at 06:58 PM
i agree Mr. Kennedy, welkl said. I too have disagreed with John Bogak, but I did it respectfully

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